Campbell graduated from Ribault High School in Jacksonville, Florida in 1968 and quickly moved to pursue a career in music. At 16, he bought his first guitar, a cheap Harmony model, from a pawnshop. His first electric guitar was a $60 Goya.
He formed a band named Dead or Alive which quickly disbanded. He first met Tom Petty through Mudcrutch drummer Randall Marsh when they were auditioning him and he suggested his friend Mike to play rhythm guitar.
Mudcrutch moved to L.A. and signed a record deal with Shelter Records, recording an album in 1974 that ended up being shelved. Campbell then joined Petty to found the original Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers in 1975 along with Benmont Tench (keyboards), Ron Blair (bass guitar) and Stan Lynch (drums).
Outside of Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers, Campbell has co-written an array of songs, including “The Boys of Summer” and “Heart of the Matter” (both with Don Henley). Other songwriting credits include songs for The Blue Stingrays, Johnny Cash, Fleetwood Mac, Lone Justice, Roger McGuinn, Stevie Nicks, John Prine, Restless Sleeper, Patti Scialfa, Brian Setzer, J.D. Souther, The Williams Brothers and Robin Zander. He also produced four songs on Roy Orbison’s Mystery Girl album and played guitar on The Wallflowers’ “Sixth Avenue Heartache”.
Campbell has been married to Marcie Campbell since 1975. They have had two daughters, Brie and Kelsey (the latter of whom provided vocals to the Full Moon Fever track “Zombie Zoo”) and one son, Darian.
In 2004, he recorded the guitar solo for the song “Los Angeles is Burning” from the punk rock band Bad Religion’s The Empire Strikes First album.
In 2007, he joined a reformed Mudcrutch along with Petty, Tench, Tom Leadon and Randall Marsh.
In 2008, he played Banjo on the track Love Song from the LP Earth to the Dandy Warhols by The Dandy Warhols .
He plays the guitar and the mandolin in Bob Dylan’s 2009 album Together Through Life.
Mike Campbell still tours and works on albums with Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers and is involved with his side-band, The Dirty Knobs.
Edited by KeithJones on 6 Aug 2009, 20:21
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